I bought the game over the weekend (yeah, I know. I bought a game!) and it's a pretty good game. However, everyone can agree that it lacks a lot of polish and is plagued with an enormous number of bugs and glitches that will often interfere with the experience.
It's mostly worth the money, I'd say. It's a lot of fun with a few buddies over Ventrilo. And finally, something I was desperately hoping for: the game difficulty becomes exponentially more difficult when playing as a group. Lots of fun!
In brief, since I'm short on time, the game scores 8/10 for the money.
The game's performance scales reasonably well. It runs at around 40+ frames per second on maximum detail level on the laptop (1440x900). It runs at about 60+ frames per second on my brother's PC (Prescott 3.0E, 2GB PC3200, 7800 GS) on medium detail level, at 1900x1200. So this means machines running something like a Radeon X800 GT 256MB or GeForce 6800 Ultra 256MB will play it perfectly fine.
Last edited by Amon; November 7, 2007 at 05:24 PM.
Yup. Multiplayer is an absolute blast (if you aren't bothered by a few teleportation/instancing issues) with friends. Above all, the grungy Hellgate universe is a welcome change of theme from most other MMORPGs.
Note: there is no subscription fee. You have an option of subscribing (relatively small monthly fee) to receive a few extra features and exclusive equipment, etc.
Single player campaign is rather straight-forward and pretty average; it would be between a 6.5 and 7.5 (I'm normally quite harsh when judging games). The story/universe feels good and believable because it is a derivative of the contemporary real world, but really strange no matter how I slice it probably because it's such a new twist. To be honest, multiplayer is fundamentally unchanged from the single player mode with the added benefit of other self-aware plot elements (meaning other players) and helps flesh out a more believable universe. I'm provisionally scoring the game as a whole at a rather high 7.5 to 8.0/10 because of a very unusual but fresh game plot and obscene difficulty scaling with the more players in your party (even at three members, it feels as if it's scaled for a six-member party). Player death isn't as punishing as other MMORPGs have a habit of making it feel because resurrection isn't much of a problem (which may be a bad thing) due to the Quake-like pace of combat and resurrection. Likewise, because of said pace, it is best enjoyed with active voice chat like the usual Ventrilo or Teamspeak (I believe the game has integrated voice chat provided by Xfire).
The only major gameplay problems that irritate me is that some of the quests feel very improvised and/or utterly dull, but I'm still near the beginning where it is vastly underground and in confines.
If you're an MMO kind of person who doesn't want to flush your wallet and time playing World of Warcraft, in other words, a casual MMO user, this game should be a top pick without contest. Obviously, the game is rewarding for the more intense players by way of a very light and completely optional subscription fee.
Last edited by Amon; November 8, 2007 at 12:25 AM.